Writers’ block is one of writers’ most hated moments. For a long time, it personally made me feel like I sucked as a writer because I couldn’t think of anything. And I would be staring at the computer screen for what seems like hours.
Then I kind of figured out why I couldn’t get the words down. I was stopping myself. My creativity.
Once an idea came to my head and it wasn’t the most fabulous awesome idea I could think of then I would dismiss it and think of another one before I even wrote a sentence. I should have just started writing the idea and changed it later because one idea influences the start of another.
If I would have written the idea, I would’ve gotten the ball rolling even if I knew I would change it later.
You have to get the ball rolling because the perfect idea that’s going to please the world isn’t going to happen the first time you try to think of it.
Writers’ block vs. Procrastination
There is a thin line between having real trouble thinking of something to write and distracting yourself until the juices start to flow.
Don’t waste your time staring off into the sunset when you know you can write the best book of your life if you focused harder.
Procrastination is stalling because you don’t want to write something wack. I used was a perfectionist when it came to my first draft until I remembered the most obvious thing. It’s the first draft.
I’ve come to realize even the most famous authors have those first drafts they hated. And they should because they’re shitty. See Shitty First Drafts and Why I Love Them.
I came up with a few tips/tricks for shooting the writers’ block bugger
1. Believe in your Creativity
You know what you want to say, you just don’t know the best way to say it.
You second guess yourself and think what you’ve wrote is cliché’. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Believe in your creativity that it will sound good.
Don’t pull your hair out over a couple of phrases or lack of adjectives in your head. If it really bothers you, write the most boring adjective you can think of, highlight it or circle it and go back to it later.
Don’t let your creativity freeze stop you from finishing your draft. Keep writing.
2. How To Get The Ball Rolling
You may have the idea of how the ending may turn out and maybe even the middle but it’s getting to that point in the story that’s the challenge.
Close your eyes and picture your characters, think of the story or the goal of the story. Open your eyes and just blurt down whatever comes to your mind. Sometimes just seeing something on the page gives us confidence to keep writing and the ideas to keep flowing.
- Work Backwards
Envision the end if you know it or the middle and work backwards. What gets them to the middle or the end? What are the ripple effects that take place in the story?
Think of the dots in the story (What Happens) and connect them. That causes this that causes that, which causes this that causes that. If you know the ‘that’ and ‘this’ (What Happened) you can think of the ‘causes’ (What made it happen).
Think about the end to get your beginning idea.
3. Getting Back In your Grove
Ok. So you’ve already written a good chunk then suddenly that annoying ‘stop sign’ shows up in your head and you can’t think of what to say next.
It comes out of nowhere but you have to find your grove again.
Reread what you’ve written and think about what you want to happen next.
I sometimes lose my grove if I take a long break from writing and I don’t remember where I was going with what I’ve written. Once I reread, I remember and shortly after I’m adding a sentence, then a paragraph and then eventually I’ve met my goal for the day.
This has a lot to do with being patient and not letting the writers’ block frustrate you because then your brain freezes.
Remember it’s a first draft and you can always rewrite.
4. Take a Reading Break
One way to get your creative juices flowing again is to take a reading break. Sometimes looking at a computer screen or notebook paper for a long time will wear our eyes out.
Reading someone else’s’ creative piece brings out the creative part in us. I recommend a good book by your favorite author if you have one handy.
This is not procrastination because if you can’t think of something, you can’t think of something.
It’s seeking for inspiration.
Just holding a book in your hand reminds you of your goal to get your book published and out there in the world (again if you’re already an author).
I believe reading is a writer’s best friend. We learn from authors and from each other as writers.
Good luck in your writing journey,
Please share your tips for overcoming writer’s block and what you’ve thought of my tips. Ta Ta.